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Studio Group Supervision
3 semester full time structured postgraduate program

About the Urban Architecture Masters Program

The Urban Architecture Laboratory is devoted to a direct engagement with contemporary urbanism. Research is an ongoing inquiry into the diversity of forces that shape the contemporary metropolis with a particular emphasis on Melbourne as a case study.

The Master of Architecture studio program works through a testing of architectural responses to these issues through large scale, speculative design projects that aim to confront difficult urban problems to which there are currently no obvious answers. Research is conducted in an intensive studio environment with yearly themes that are proposed as a framework for the development of each candidate�s thesis question which will develop over the duration of their candidature.

In addition to the RMIT staff attached to the program, leading national and international architects are invited as guest professors each semester, and professionals from a range of disciplines that have particular expertise around the issues being researched contribute to the program.

Masters Program Structure

The course is conducted as a 12 month, three semester, full-time program. The curriculum is based on three simultaneous and interrelated streams: intensive design studios, focussed research seminars and the ongoing development of an individual design thesis which is the penultimate outcome of each candidate's degree.

Semester 1
Design Studio
Research Seminar
Thesis development

Semester 2
Design Studio
Research Seminar
Thesis development

Semester 3
Design Thesis

Semester 4
Thesis Examinations
Graduate Exhibition

The examination process is an open public event comprising oral presentation to an external jury, exhibition, and submission of a bound visual record of the project. It occurs after the successful completion of three semesters as outlined above. In accordance with RMIT University regulations, candidature may be extended up to a maximum of 2 years duration, if required.


Shane Murray
Associate Professor of Architectural and Urban Design
Urban Architecture Laboratory Director
Shane Murray Architects
Rm 8 12 27
Phone +61 3 99253514

Nigel Bertram
Senior Lecturer in Architecture - UAL
Urban Architecture Course Area Coordinator
NMBW Architecture Studio
Rm 8 12 29
Phone +61 3 99251923

Carey Lyon
Adjunct Professor of Architecture
UAL Masters co-supervisor
Lyons Architects

Visiting Professors and Guest Critics

Recent critics include:

Brent Allpress, RMIT Architecture
Simon Anderson, UWA, Perth
Jun Aoki, Tokyo
Mike Austin, UNITEC, Auckland
Kirsten Bauer, RMIT Landscape Architecture, Melbourne
Mike Berry, RMIT Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI), Melbourne
Jennifer Hocking, Architects in Association, Melbourne
Marie-Laure Hoedemakers, Melbourne
Ross Jenner, University of Auckland
Peter Kohane, University of NSW, Sydney
William Lim, Singapore
Carey Lyon, Lyons Architects, Melbourne
John Macarthur, University of Queensland, Brisbane
Ian McDougall, Ashton Raggatt MacDougall, Melbourne
Howard Raggatt, Ashton Raggatt MacDougall, Melbourne
Julian Raxworthy, RMIT Landscape Architecture, Melbourne
Akira Suzuki, Tokyo
Yoshiharu Tsukamoto, Tsukamoto Lab - Tokyo Institute of Technology TITech; Atelier Bow Wow
Rene van der Velde, Melbourne
Leon van Schaik, Innovation Professor of Architecture, RMIT Architecture


The Urban Architecture Masters program is a full-time postgraduate research degree by project, run in intensive studio mode. This is not a course-work Masters degree program. Candidates will require a high degree of personal commitment and motivation.

Eligible applicants include students currently completing their undergraduate architectural degree, recent graduates and professional architects. Applicants must hold a recognised professional architecture degree at the time of enrolment (before 31 March), or provide transcript of results to same effect. Applicants with a Bachelor of Architecture enrol in and graduate with a Master of Architecture (Urban Architecture).

Where an applicant from a non-architectural background is accepted into the course they would take the degree either in their own discipline or as a Master of Design. For example, an eligible candidate with a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture would graduate from the course with a Master of Landscape Architecture (Urban Architecture). Candidates from other disciplines accepted into the program would enrol in and graduate with a Master of Design (Urban Architecture).

Submission Requirements:
A4 portfolio of architectural design work, statement of research intentions, completed application form. (further details on application form)

Selection Criteria:
design skill as shown in portfolio; engagement with and understanding of contemporary urban/ architectural issues as shown in statement of research intentions; ability to complete course in set time-frame.

Application Forms:
click here to download

Forms are also available from:

RMIT Architecture Program
School of Architecture and Design
RMIT Building 8, Level 12
360 Swanston Street
Melbourne VIC 3001
Phone: +61 3 9925 9799
Fax: +61 3 9925 3507



Candidates are provided with access to a dedicated studio space within the RMIT City Campus for the duration of the course. This is networked and available for 24 hour access. Candidates are expected to provide their own computer workstations.

Other facilities include a Postgraduate Research Centre with high-end MAC and PC computers, laser printers, scanners, CD burners and layout areas specifically for research students in the School of Architecture & Design.

The School of Architecture & Design at RMIT city campus has extensive facilities available to all students, including computer laboratories, a/v facilities, model workshop, photographic darkrooms, recording studios, and the RMIT Swanston Library. Postgraduate students are given priority access to these facilities.

Publication and Exhibition

Completed thesis projects and studio research are published every two years in 38South, the journal of the UAL, together with urban architectural design research essays, transcripts of visiting lectures, reviews and other material produced by candidates over the duration of the program. 38South is part of the internationally recognised publication program in the School of Architecture & Design, RMIT. The most recent volume of 38South is:

38South Vol 3: Urban Architecture Laboratory 2002-2004
edited by Shane Murray and Nigel Bertram
Melbourne: RMIT University Press, 2005

Each year, following examinations, there is a public exhibition of thesis projects. Leading professionals and academics associated with the school participate in this event. The exhibition and publication program forms a significant part of the school's calendar and gives important recognition and a durable record of each candidate's work.


The School of Architecture and Design is located at RMIT's City Campus, in the heart of Melbourne's central business district. Accommodation is not provided, however RMIT does assist candidates in locating appropriate accommodation through its student housing service.

The Architecture Program has a policy of promoting the appointment of postgraduate candidates in appropriate part-time tutoring positions within the undergraduate course, where available. Limited additional scholarship amounts are available to selected UAL candidates upon application.

Successful national applicants would be eligible for their HECS fees to be paid by RMIT University.


Postgraduate research candidates are eligible to apply for APA Awards and RMIT Research scholarships (applications close 31 October).

For application details contact:

Associate Professor Shane Murray
Director of the Urban Architecture Laboratory (UAL)
Ph: +61 3 9925 2821
Fax: +61 3 9925 3507

Liam Revell
Research and Postgraduate Administration Coordinator
RMIT School of Architecture and Design
Rm 8 12 07
Phone +61 3 99253505